How Much Will “Occupy Pittsburgh” Cost Tax Payers?

by on January 28th, 2011
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For almost two weeks Pittsburgh has been a city divided. No, it has nothing to do with Sidney Crosby or even Ben Roethlisberger. No, this is from the Occupy Pittsburgh protesters. While I have nothing but admiration for those who stand up for what they believe in, this is a sloppy effort to bring awareness to the Steel City. Most older people have no idea what the “Occupy Wall Street” movement is about and when it crept into the city and started making headlines here most dismissed it as the slacker generation looking for the new cool thing to revolt against.

Our mayor, Luke Ravenstahl, lacks a backbone. He plays political favorites, has almost no accountability for his actions (or lack thereof) and is overpaid for a job he clearly isn’t qualified for. With the Port Authority in financial duress, streets practically swallowing vehicles from potholes and rampant abuse of the public assistance programs – the last thing the city needs is another drain. To me that is all Occupy Pittsburgh is. I know some of the temporary occupants of Melon Green sit there and Google away the news pages looking to see if they are mentioned – I hope they find this and feel a twinge of shame.

Who ends up paying for all of the police overtime? Who is going to foot the bill for the emergency services when people are injured? Who is forking out the cash for the heat tents erected to keep protestors warm when the temperature drops below freezing? Who? Pittsburgh. More to the point, the tax payers. You know, the people that actually go to work. The members of Occupy Pittsburgh are quick to say that they are gainfully employed or are students; dig a little deeper and see how many of them are in SSI or SSD or are receiving public assistance. Oh, did I step on some toes with that?

Occupy Pittsburgh is a trickle down plan from something that gained world wide attention and spurned other movements. Public awareness can spread like wildfire but on the same token there is usually a high price to be paid when all is said and done. Are there professional protestors that only show up when there is a chance that the media will be reporting? Do even 50% of the protestors know exactly what they are standing up against? If they really want to strike fear in to the corporations they publicly chastise then they need to live off the grid, bury their money in jars in the yard and stop going to Starbucks.

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